Putting YA lit on the shelfPosted: November 8, 2011
YA/teen/tween lit is a relatively new category for publishers and libraries. Until recently, you were either in the kiddie section or in the adult shelves. That’s a big gap. And then there are the kids who have READ the entire kiddie section, but emotionally aren’t ready for the adult stacks. It’s a messy world in YA lit…
Suddenly though, the market seems flooded with angsty novels about first love, growing up, the dredded terrors of High School and Middle school…all the teen stuff. Throw in some vampires or fantasy & wizards, and you’ve got it covered, right? wrong. There are some AMAZING YA books out there right now, and there are a lot that are, well, drivel. Putting a vampire, wizard, or quest in a book doesn’t make it good if the story isn’t good on its own. Giving a kid a bully or quest to deal with, again, doesn’t automatically make it good.
A lot of my students HATE that all the books out right now involve magic or the undead. And there’s another healthy group that feels like if they read ONE MORE version of “Sixteen Candles” they might barf.
Which brings us to today’s award, which isn’t really an award. Booklist is a publication run by the ALA (American Library Association). They’ve been doing book reviews and purchasing guides for libraries and schools since the dinosaurs (no really, over 100 some odd years). Very respectable, very well known, these people know their stuff. SO, when a book appears on the recommended “Best Books”list, chances are it’s going to be good. My ONLY qualm is that we’ve still got adults picking out books for teens and kids. When do THEY get to pick? More on that later.
Here’s the link to booklist online.
Anf or more info about booklist & how they select books so YOUR LOCAL library/bookstore can select books, click HERE